Latest exam updates

Performance Grade exams

We are now offering Performance Grade exams every month. Please check here for dates and fees. We are extending the introductory 15% discount for these exams so that it applies to all remotely-assessed Performance Grade and ARSM exams in 2021. Just enter code ABPG15SG when you book. Please also read our terms and conditions here.

Singapore office

On government advice, we will be following a more flexible and hybrid way of working. Although working from home is still encouraged, from 12 April we will be able to answer a limited number of calls and applicants can contact us via the Local Contact - ABRSM: Local exam contacts. We will continue to update you when further information is published by Ministry of Manpower.

Grade 5 Music Theory waiver (not applicable in the UK & Ireland)

We are extending our Grade 5 Music Theory waiver until 23 May 2021. This means that candidates with a Grade 6 to 8 Performance Grade exam submission date up to and including 23 May can take their exam without first passing Grade 5 Music Theory. We are making this exceptional arrangement to allow candidates who have been unable to take an exam in recent months to progress with their learning. From 24 May, the Grade 5 Music Theory requirement will return. For exam dates/exam submission dates after 23 May, all candidates taking a Grade 6 to 8 Performance or Practical Grade must first pass Grade 5 Music Theory.

Supporting world music through Covid-19

ABRSM’s mission is to inspire musical achievement, globally. Our International Sponsorship Fund (ISF) is one means through which we do this. In this interview, director Alessia Lombardi introduces the Dhow Counties Music Academy (DCMA), recipient of the ISF 2020:

Tell us a little bit about your organisation:

DCMA is the central hub for Zanzibari music and cultural heritage in East Africa. As the only music academy of its kind in the region, DCMA has gained an ever-increasing international reputation for preserving traditional music, by protecting and promoting traditional Swahili music such as taarab, kidumbak and ngoma as essential forms of intangible cultural heritage. We keep the legacy of these musical traditions alive through workshops, seminars, classes, certificate and diploma programs

and live performances.

What is your vision for DCMA’s future?

The academy uses music education as a catalyst for social, cultural and economic development. Since 2002, the DCMA has trained more than 1,800 students and it is very active in creating job opportunities for its students. My vision is to blend the heritage and culture of Zanzibar with a modern and vibrant expression of the artistic and social output that the islands offer, using their venerable and time-honored premises, equipped with technological capability, and broadcasting to the world.

How has DCMA been affected by the Covid-19 pandemicand managed to overcome the difficulties?

Sadly, key work streams were severely curtailed by the Covid-19 Pandemic, as academic and commercial operations were halted by necessary closures of educational centers, public events spaces and hotels. DCMA is an organisation that relies on income from its performances as well as donations, and has managed to survive through the development of new initiatives to promote the academy and its musicians/students, such as its popular it’s ‘our’ Monday appointment with Nyumbani Kwetu (Our Home).

Every week DCMA offers online performances, through our Facebook page, promoting musicians and giving them an opportunity to play together and share knowledge. Additionally, DCMA teachers and students came together shortly before lockdown to create a music video #COVID19 called "Mgeni Asiye na Kheri (Unexpected guest), in order to use music as a form of solidarity. DCMA wanted to show that it stands together with the whole world, united against the COVID-19 pandemic and we will come out of this Global Pandemic stronger, prouder and ready to continue our cause as the musical ambassadors of Zanzibari culture, heritage and tradition.

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